My name is Snezana. I am 55 years old.
Your help is truly needed at this moment.
I want to initiate women association in town named Bela Zemlja, between Užice and Zlatibor, the touristic center of the western Serbia. Women mostly are in unenviable financial position, whether they are single parents or wifes and mothers without employment. Unemployment puts them in group of citizens that are socially excluded, although many of them could be very active and useful part of society. Left alone, they have no chances to find a good solution for their problem and get out from the vicious circle they are thrown into. Their age (between 35 and 60 years) makes them uninteresting for employers, and at the other hand for self-starting activity there is a lack of knowledge, money or space.
Idea of CREATIVE MENTHORING can perhaps be a solution for many of them.
For more than 35 years, I have been creating and producing applied art items by using different techniques. In last 20 years, fusion glass technique and stained glass technique are what I’ve been focused at, and pieces of jewelry that I make in that creative process are leaving Serbia and traveling to all sides of the world with the new owners, who I met in Belgrade or Zlatibor, during the handmade expositions. It is a great pleasure for everyone who creates, and in my case way to help my family to overcome crisis times. Those times are not over yet for me and many of those who live around me. What to do to help people around to increase their own chance for development? I am ready to commit my space, knowledge and experiences to finding solution for that.
By adaptation ofhouse that I live in, there would be made conditions that allow different kinds of educational courses, enabling women to learn for free many things, whether it be traditional crafts or modern techniques (needlework, knitting, decoupage technique, glass painting, jewelry making, silk painting,...).Among my collegues, there are many of those who are capable of being educators, as they are very successful in the world of creative ideas, with recognizable style in techniques they are using, and off course I am ready to teach those women my skills and techniques.
That should be center for our gatherings a few days in a week, and by socializing, chats, exchange of experiences and ideas, that should make us find solutions for those women that should be satisfying and compatiable into their private lifes.
DIALOGUE AS WAY TO FINDING SOLUTION AND STARTING ACTION
It is very important for us to use those meetings to see what talents and knowledges these women already possess, as well as limits caused by their own lifes, with goal to organize creative workshops that would teach each of them new skills and knowledges, in accordance with their needs and abilities. They should feel as a part of collective, as persons that are able to change their own social status and that they are not alone in that process.
All educational workshops, materials for learning and producing and hosting educators from other cities will be financed from these resources, as well as the other activities for promoting and selling of products made by this society.
The space should be adapted for the needs ofthis workshop, which means that at least four women should be able to simultaneously be inside with working tables and materials required for some of the techniques.
Selling of those products is actually the greatest task and it requires skills that are not easy to learn. Many of those women do not use a computer or do not have enough knowledge about that kind of tools. It is necessary to organize basic course about using computer and internet as communicating and marketing tool of the new age, but also to teach them how to, as society or individually, sell their product to the bigger market, where they can find many of those who like and respect handmade and unique works. I believe I can help them all in most of those tasks.During the studies of entrepreneurial management, I learned basic business principles, but more important than studies was experience from many expositions of handmade, where I saw this kind of arts and crafts as capable to attract attention of many people, as well as make life more dynamic for those who now can call it their profession, hobby or casual activity. Those people create beauty and share it with others, where the measure for value is not only money but also feel of satisfaction of the maker as well as the one who will possess the handmade piece, which gives to all these activities feel of the higher cause.
Thanks to all those who support us in idea of initiating a new way of living!